Apple Maps Beats Google And Waze In An Unofficial Test Among Tech Pundits

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John C Dvorak, Leo Laporte, and a couple of other folks involved in This Week in Tech (TwiT) had a meeting together at the Apple campus at 1 Infinite Loop in Cupertino this past Monday, and they ended up having an informal battle of the navigation apps in the three cars they were each driving. TWiT CEO Lisa Kentzell and marketing guy Glenn Rubenstein were in one car, using Apple Maps, while Laporte was using Waze, Dvorak using Google Maps.

Dvorak wrote the story up over at PC Magazine, and claims that Apple Maps got the TWiT folks to the Apple campus faster than either Waze, which came in dead last, or Google Maps. We can count on this being the truth of their experience, as anyone of Dvorak’s stature might have a hard time admitting that he lost a race.

Dvorak feels that Google Maps is getting “a little ragged,” making note of several inaccurate routing directions in his test, including a discrepancy in left/right directions in a couple of cases. He also notes that the app has not re-routed him around a traffic issue in many months, an issue that he feels takes a bit of the shine off the Google Maps experience, and feels that it extends to the web-based directions as well.

It’ll be interesting if he switches over to Apple Maps for a bit, and writes up his observations. For, as fun as this test is, it’s no substitute for using the competing product for a while and making up your own mind.

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  • RyanTV

    Apple maps is still a public transport fail. 8.5 million New Yorkers still prefer Google Maps.

  • ranasjsu

    I always liked it.

  • davester13

    Apple Maps still suck. I’ve reported the same issue multiple times over the last six months. Still not fixed.

  • davester13

    Apple Maps still suck. I’ve reported the same issue multiple times over the last six months. Still not fixed.

    And by issue, I mean the map is missing a road that’s been there for a couple of years.

  • lwdesign1

    I still maintain that while Apple Maps have their downsides in some areas of the world at the present, Apple will soon have these glitches fixed in their usual elegant fashion. Now that Scott Forstall is no longer running the user interface department of iOS, Jonny Ive has taken over and I expect great things from him in the look, feel and usability department. It’s speculation on my part, but but from various reports I believe Forstall was a major impediment to getting things completed due to his abrasive manners. Fortunately Maps has worked well from day one here in Florida for me.

  • DonPope

    One test does not prove anything.
    I like the Apple maps interface better but it has led me astray at least once.

    Also, Apple maps has the very robotic voice of Siri. It speaks directions in a monotone voice that can be hard to understand when it says “TAKEEXITFIFTEENATOIFIVENINETYFIVEEAST”.

    The voice of Google maps has a more natural inflection and cadence. You can understand it even when it is speaking a bunch of numbers.

  • dieselmaniac

    I have all 3 apps. I love the voice on Google’s app, but it lacks a lot of features. It’s routing isn’t the best either. Sometimes I question the route it comes up with, knowing there’s a better one. Apple Maps are ok too, but it’s lead me off track a few times in the New England area. I personally like Waze the best. I like the crowd sourcing features it has, and it’s fairly accurate. The cop and hazard warnings really help out especially on long highway trips. My only gripe regarding Waze is that it doesn’t tell you which side of the road your destination is on.

  • Liofa1

    Apple maps might be better in the USA, but not here in the UK, they are horribly inaccurate and lacking detail.

About the author

Rob LeFebvreAnchorage, Alaska-based freelance writer and editor Rob LeFebvre is Cult of Mac's Culture Editor. He has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef

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